What is it really like launching a Pet Crematorium?

We spoke to John van der Heijden from Dierencrematorium Zeeland to find out.


What it’s really like to start a Pet Crematorium

Beginning a new business is always an experience, how does launch a Pet Creamtorium differ? We recently had the opportunity to sit down with John van der Heijden whilst he visited our UK Head Office to collect his PET200 as well as receive full training in its operation.

Based in Dieren in the Netherlands, John has just launched his new pet crematorium with the help of the team at Addfield.  We asked John to share his experiences in deciding on starting a Pet Crematorium his own words:

“This is a totally new business for me in Pet Cremation and it will be based in the South West of the Netherlands.  It is my own business right from the start, how I decided on the business is quite a story.

I was looking to start my own business. I originally wanted to do something with people, not the cremation side but more to do with the selling of coffins. Not just normal ones, but custom made ones, so if someone wanted to have a purple striped one, then we could do that.  If that’s the way you want to say good bye to a loved one then it should be possible to do so for a reasonable price. I searched around and found that it was not something that you could really do as a business to pay all of your bills.  After that I went and looked at animals, again at first I looked at Coffins but found that was also not going to pay the bills.

That’s the way I found pet cremation, I discovered it by chance I don’t remember the exact moment when I decided on pet cremation. It was just something that grew in my head until one day I just said: “yes that is what I am going to do”.  After that, I did a lot of research to check that it would be financially what I needed it to be and give me the opportunities that I really wanted from my own business.

Once I had settled on Pet Cremation It took quite a while before I discovered Addfield.  At first, I looked locally and researched on google for companies that built cremators. I had some discussions with companies and they gave me some prices and opportunities which really gave me a headache, the prices in the Netherlands are anything but normal.

Then I went to google translate and translated ‘Crematieiovens’ which is the Dutch word for cremators. This is how I found Addfield, I saw some pictures on the internet, from these I remembered that I had been shown an oven of theirs by a pet cremators in the Netherlands when I was researching the business.

I went back to the company that showed me the machine, spoke to them and they were very excited about Addfield and the machines and that is how I got to get in touch with them.

I chose the ‘PET200’ after researching on their website as to what would be the best solution for me. Then I looked at burn rate and KG an hour, the size of the chamber and other things. I had already decided on the ‘PET200’ in my head, I spoke to Addfield and then came over to see the machine in your factory. After looking at it, it was confirmed that the ‘PET200’ would be the best machine for me to buy with the possibility to get the extension machine to easily expand it, which made me happy that this was the right machine for me.

When I first came to the factory I was very late and everyone had left for the day following a delay on the plane.  This is why Steve Lloyd (Managing Director) showed me around and this is the first time I have met the rest of the team now that I have come across for my training which is very good.

The communication has been very good. We have used ‘WhatsApp’ to keep in touch regularly with Derek Carr (Production Director).  We didn’t speak directly as I was quite nervous about speaking English and finding the right words, but with things like ‘What’sApp,’ it was quite an easy way of keeping contact with each other.

In the next two weeks, my business will open and I have everything ready except the installing of the oven as it is still the most expensive part of the company it is being put in last.

Following that within 1 year or 2 years I am planning to have a big part of the local market.  I am going to try to be very clear and open as a company and with transparent pricing.  I have big plans for the future as I have chosen a building with more space for a bigger cremator, as well as pets I also want to do horses. That comes down to being successful enough to invest more back into the business but that is where I want to go.  I have already spoken to Addfield to make sure that the horse machine can be made for my space.

Working with Addfield has been very easy going, easy talking to each other, always getting the right information I was asking about.  It has been a good experience.

Setting up the Pet Cremation business has been quite a lot of work.  To set up a company no matter what you are going to do whether you are going to buy and sell shoes or things like that, there are similar things you have to deal with.   But the whole journey to get the company built up is something I would like to do every day, it was good fun it takes a lot of energy and gives you so much energy to build on. The whole journey has been fantastic.”

Since the interview, John has launched his business and we wish him all the best success for the future and we are sure to be out to see him again soon to go over all our solutions for Equine cremations.

For more information on John’s pet cremation business, you can visit them online at https://www.dierencrematoriumzeeland.nl/

Dieren Crematorium Zeeland

To learn more about what it’s really like running one of the UK’s busiest Pet Crematoriums watch our interview by clicking here.

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